Kim calls for strengthening ‘unity and cooperation’ with China

Seoul, Mar 23 (efe-epa).- North Korea’s leader on Tuesday called for strengthening “unity and cooperation” between Pyongyang and Beijing in the face of “hostile forces,” state media reported.

Kim Jong-un sent a “verbal message” to Xi Jinping to communicate to him the results of the 8th Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) with a view to “intensifying the strategic communication between the two parties on the basis of deep comradeship,” state-run news agency KCNA reported Tuesday.

In the message, Kim “stressed the need to strengthen the unity and cooperation between the two parties and two countries to cope with the hostile forces’ all-round challenges and obstructive moves,” according to KCNA, which did not indicate when the message was conveyed to Beijing.

KCNA also reported the Chinese president’s response, in which he congratulated Kim on the results of the Congress and highlighted his intention “to successfully defend, consolidate and develop the China-DPRK (North Korea’s formal name) relations” and improve the lives of the citizens of both countries through joint efforts.

Xi also “expressed his willingness to make new positive contributions to defending peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and achieving peace, stability, development and prosperity in the region,” according to KCNA.

The WPK’s Congress “discussed and decided on its policy stand on the bolstering of defense capabilities of the country, the inter-Korean relations and the DPRK-US relations,” KCNA said.

This exchange of messages between Kim and Xi took place two days after the conclusion of tense talks between Chinese and US delegations in Alaska to address the situation of the Korean Peninsula.

This signal of cooperation by North Korea and its main ally comes amid Pyongyang’s toughening rhetoric against Seoul and stagnant denuclearization talks with Washington.

Denuclearization talks have been stalled since the Hanoi summit in February 2019, where Washington refused to lift sanctions because it considered the North Korean disarmament offer insufficient.

Following the failure of the Trump administration to resolve the conflict, Kim urged Joe Biden’s new US government in January to propose new alternatives to resume the dialog, warning that Pyongyang was preparing new weapons tests. EFE-EPA


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